First comes a sea lion montage. The second photo, or course, is not of sea lions, but is of two workers from the Discovery Channel recording underwater sea lion vocalizations.
This mother sea lion is nursing her pup, and the second photo shows a rare albino sea lion pup.
On to reptiles! The first photo is a land iguana in the process of shedding its skin, second is a lava lizard, and the third photo shows a mocking bird sitting on top of a marine iguana.
Now, the abundant bird life. The first photo is of a blue-footed booby, the iconic bird of the Galapagos Islands. Second is of a swallow-tailed gull pair and their chick. Third is of an albatross with its egg.
The bird hovering above me in the photo below is a frigate bird that stayed above our boat for awhile, tracking our progress. The next photo shows a pelican taking flight, and the third shows a Galapagos penguin.
Next up are some photos of sea life. First are some bright red Sally Lightfoot crabs, followed by two of the many types of fish we saw while snorkeling.
We also saw sea turtles, Eagle rays (not pictured) and stingrays (pictured), and even a shark (while we were on the beach--NOT in the water snorkeling).
Below is a photo of our guide snorkeling with a juvenile sea lion. This was a very special snorkeling session, because a whole group of curious sea lion youngsters cavorted all around us and stared into our masks to see what were were all about, as shown in the second photo.
On the island of Floreana, we stopped at Post Office Bay to see the impromptu Post Office (the barrel) where folks stuff post cards addressed to friends and family. The tradition is that you look through the plastic bags of post cards in there, and if you find one addressed to someone who lives near you, you should take it and hand deliver it.
Here's our group on the "flight school" cliff on the island of Espanola where sea birds learn to fly. The second photo shows a nearby blowhole. The third shows a view of Gardner Bay on San Cristobal island from an overlook. This island was our last stop, and the island from which our plane trip back to Quito began.
Back in Quito for one night before heading home, we visited the Ethnohistoric Museum of Handicrafts of Ecuador, where we were encouraged to touch the textiles, play the musical instruments, and so on. We ate our final dinner together as a group inside the museum, as shown in the last photo.
This was an amazing trip, and I hope you enjoyed the photos!